Where do you begin when choreographing a piece?
Dear Puzzling Pieces,
When it comes to choreography, there aren’t a lot of ways you can go wrong! Remember that choreography is a creation of passion, a reflection of one’s moods or interpretations through dance. That being said, I’ve had successes with choreographing from the top of the piece or starting from the last eight count and working my way back. I feel that there are some important things to keep in mind though. In my experience, there are two scenarios when it comes to choreography; you either choreograph to a song you are absolutely in love with, or a song that you’ve been assigned to choreograph to/feel would ideally make awesome choreography, but are not as passionate about.
Focus On One Section
In the first scenario, you hear a song and you’ve been bitten by the choreo bug. A lot of people new to the choreography game will tend to start from the beginning of the song and go from there, but I find it’s better to hone in on the section that you can see that perfect move or combo and branch out from there. My better pieces have all come from this tactic, and filling in small sections here and there until I have a good foundation of how I’d like the piece to look.
Budget Your Time
In the second scenario, the most effective method is to ensure you budget your time wisely. Some people are gifted with churning out choreo in mere minutes, whereas most need time when making a piece to a song you aren’t feeling as much. If I’m tasked with making choreography to a song I just can’t get into, I give myself a full week with two hour intervals. I find it easier to start from the top and once completed, use a couple days to fine tune it so that it’s not just moves to certain sections. You’d be surprised with how differently you feel about a song you previously weren’t feeling once you’ve made choreo to it!
In the end, just go with what feels most natural to you. Bear in mind it may take a couple tries to get it the way you want, but don’t let it stop you! Good Luck!
Where do you guys begin when you choreograph a piece? What is the first thing you do? Share your process with us by commenting below!
Want to hear more advice from avid class takers and choreographers alike? Click here to see what one piece of advice they would give!